Proposal to require municipal support for new or increased bottled water takings
Bill or Act:
Ontario Water Resources Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.40
Summary of Proposal:
We are proposing changes to the Ontario Water Resources Act that would give local host municipalities more direct input on allowing bottled water companies to withdraw new or increased amounts of groundwater in their communities.
Giving municipalities more direct input on new or increased bottled water takings will help further protect water resources in Ontario by ensuring that local communities also have a say in water bottling permits.
In June 2020, we proposed enhancements to Ontario's water taking program, including a new requirement for water bottling companies to have the support of their local host municipality for a new or increased bottled water taking. More information on the proposed enhancements can be viewed on the Environmental Registry of Ontario at ERO #019-1340 (https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-1340). The comment period closed on August 2, 2020.
From our engagement on the proposed enhancements to our water taking program, we heard that many stakeholders would support giving municipalities more direct input on decisions to allow bottled water takings in their communities.
Municipal council resolution
Before a water bottling company applies for a permit to take water from the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, the company would be required to seek a municipal council resolution from the local host municipality either supporting or objecting to the proposed water taking. The local host municipality is the lower or single tier municipality where the proposed water taking is located. The requirement would apply to a company intending to apply for a permit for a new ground water taking or to increase the amount they are authorized to take under an existing permit.
October 6, 2020
Comments Due Date:
November 20, 2020